Return Trip

Click on the image for the full album

I know, I’ve been horrible about keeping up lately. Forgive me. 🙂  First things first. The trip to Hawaii! OMG it was amazing. I totally didn’t know what to expect but it was nice and very relaxing. Our host, and my friend Rick, was so great and made the trip that much better by being such a great tour guide and a wealth of information. He really went all out helping us see and do anything we wanted. We stayed in his guest room but he also has a lovely AirBnB if anyone is going in the future. No seriously, it was gorgeous. And apparently, the biz is growing there so the rates were exceptional. I was shocked how cheap it was compared to the over-priced hotels. Anyway, I digress… We had a great view of the beach from our patio and it was so relaxing. The morning birds annoyed Shawn a little but I loved them.

I didn’t realize how big the main island was. It’s huge. Granted, I didn’t do much research but I always thought of Hawaii as being small and tiny. I remember Oahu being much smaller. I also didn’t know that it was mostly undeveloped. Oh there are a couple big cities with a few small towns scattered about but the big island as a whole really isn’t that developed. I couldn’t get over that part the whole time we were there. lolol  Rick made sure we got to see a lot of local culture and history and helped us find all the things we wanted to do.

As you can see from the album of pics, we got around!  We could have done and seen so much more but we didn’t want to spend the whole trip driving in a car all day. We had to cut some of the site-seeing short so we could squeeze everything in. We decided before we left we wanted to do a luau, see the volcano (and lava), and go snorkeling. Obviously, we wanted to spend some time at the beach as well. It was Shawn’s first time meeting Rick in person and they got along great. I also got to meet the famous Bubbles (Rick’s bulldog) as well as Freddie and Elvis, their other 2 dogs.

We did the luau first and it was ok. We had fun but would probably skip it in the future. It was a good, ‘yeah we did it‘ event. The next day saw us driving to see the different sites, and waterfalls. Rick was our guide again and took us to several great spots. We stopped at a local gay owned cafe in Hilo for lunch. All the driving really drove it home how big the island was. Rick made sure we stopped for malasades, a local pastry. We got lucky the day we visited the volcano as you could just barely see active lava in the pit. The whole experience was awesome and a tiny bit unnerving. The steam vents were probably the part that creeped us out. The idea of walking around on top of a volcano active enough to continuously spit out steam from the ground gives you a moment of pause. hehehe  The plant life all around the crater felt almost primordial. It was a serene and surreal environment. I loved it!  The lava tube was also eerie. You could see the lines cut into the rock from the flow of lava as it churned thru the tube at lord knows how much speed. Just being in a massive tunnel created by flowing molten rock was awe-inspiring. I think having been to the volcano itself before visiting tube helped a bit. I think the impact of what we were seeing was made ‘real’ by having just seen the vents and actual lava.

We saved the best for last. The last day before we flew out we went snorkeling. OMG what a great experience! I’ve only ever been snorkeling off the beaches of Galveston when I was a kid. It was no where near the experience of being in a coral reef.We even saw a whale on our way to the cove. It was literally in front of the boat and they had to stop. hehehe

I was a bit out of sorts at the very beginning. We got in the water and for whatever reason I couldn’t get my breathing sorted properly. It only took a few minutes to adjust but I remember feeling weird and a little irritated it might ruin my experience. After a few minutes of practicing, I got the hang of it again and I think the old muscle memory kicked it. Shawn was originally a bit nervous as he’d never been at all. However, he seemed to grasp it right away. His only trouble was getting used to the fins. We both opted for little float belts as the water was pretty deep around the boat. I hadn’t been actively swimming in ages and I was a wee bit concerned I’d get tired too soon. As it turns out, we probably could have skipped the float belts. The fins were fine. Shawn got the hand of his as well.

Swimming around the coral and seeing all the amazing fish was amazing. It was like being in a tank at the Aquarium. So much diversity and most of the fish ignored us. The tour group offered lunch on the boat and I opted to hop back in the water after lunch. Far fewer snorkelers meant more fish! There were a ton more fish casually swimming in/out of the coral the second time. I cruised around the whole cove. It was by far the highlight of the trip for me. I’d be doing it here if the water wasn’t so damn cold.1

We lounged on a beach for awhile after the snorkeling trip. I didn’t spend much time in the water as my eyes seemed to have trouble adjusting. I think I might be developing low tears or something. I simply could not keep my eyes from burning every time I got a tiny bit of salt water in them. It was never a problem for me when I was younger. Having had 2 eye surgeries might have impacted me as well. Regardless, it made playing in the water a struggle. The beaches are much more rocky on the big island and finding smooth sand is a hot ticket for beach goers. We drove out to a couple of remote beaches and even those were very busy. I still had fun relaxing in the sand. The funny part is we barely got any sun. We were both afraid of getting burned so we stayed covered in SPF spray.

That’s it in a nutshell. It was great to see my friend Rick and his family. We socialized and caught on on things. The dogs were a treat as well. Seeing Bubbles madem

 




  1. Ocean water this far north stays cold year round. []

Cards

It’s that time a year again. I’m starting to send out Christmas/Holiday cards. If you would like to be added to my card list, please email, text, or message me. Don’t leave your mailing addresses as a comment obviously. I got a few back last year so if you have moved you might want to let me know. A big thank you again to the anonymous person who bought me the Destiny game last year. That was very kind of you. I definitely have played it a lot. No really, a lot! Hehe So your gift went to good use.

I always try to send out non-religious cards as I don’t always know what each person celebrates, but if I send you a card that isn’t quite in line with your religious celebration, apologies in advance. I’ve never gotten a complaint but I do try to keep it simple. I’m not religious so I try to avoid overly religious cards anyway. I’m sure it’s the thought that counts but if you read me for any length of time, you know I’m not a hyper-PC type person anyway.

Sending cards is my favorite part of the holiday. If you’ve gotten a card from me before, you know it’s a bit of a tradition and I do it with a little flair. For my blog readers, I try to go over their comments/emails from the year while I’m doing their card. It always makes me feel more connected to them. I’m probably the only weirdo that does that but I find it enjoyable. It also seems to jump start my holiday spirit. Of course, I have to put on holiday music and eggnog1 is usually on hand as well.

I’d say it’s probably the only thing I really look forward to over the Xmas holiday. Some years I don’t even do a tree, I just dig out the non-tree decorations and setup up around the apt. I always put out all the cards though.  I put them up as soon as I receive them. It’s probably the only time of the year I go to the post office more than once every few weeks.

What odd tradition do you have?




  1. or just some good booze []

Resolute-toot

I’m not big on NY resolutions anymore as it seems a bit contrived and so few people really follow thru anyway. I do; however, try on an ongoing basis to improve myself.

Looking forward this year, I think one of my goals will be less time on social media. Sadly, social media isn’t about communication anymore. It is a plaform for an individual to spew their own bias and expect reinforced support via comments/likes. I spend way too much time trying to point out distinctions that matter.

Subjective validation is all the rage and it has become very apparent to me no one cares about facts or details. Issue dejour must be devoured, judged, and spewed forth with outrage and angst and then summarilty forgotten. Exeryone expects something be done while continuing on their own path of indifference. Successful discourse is discouraged and chastized. And integrity and honesty are just buzzwords to be bandied about like so much other tripe.

​I’d rather focus on my own life more and lead by example. It sound so negative but I don’t mean it that way. I just need to stop wasting time on things I can’t control. Of course part of me says I just follow the wrong people. Maybe I should be more selective about who I follow and let follow me? *thought bubbles..thought bubbles…thought bubbles….* *Pop* Naaaaaaaaah. LOL

​My only other new goal this year is to try to get out more. Shawn and I are very comfortable being home-bodies. I think we are a wee bit too comfortable now. lol It’s time to get out a bit more and be active. Beyond that, I’m focused on the normal things: lower debt, better health, eating better, etc.

Anyone else making big new years plans?

GHHD #3 2014

Well, it is that time again. Gay High Holy Day #3 of 2014 aka Folsom St Fair.

For most of you, time to dust off your leather and don your favorite pair of come-f**k me pumps. The weekend promises to be muggy and warm so be prepared for stickiness.1 If you’re visiting, be safe and don’t trash our lovely city. If you’re local, traffic is going to be a mess. 🙂 Either way, be smart and don’t drink and drive. PD will be on the look out. MUNI, BART, Uber, Lyft, etc to wherever you need to be.

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I’m having trouble getting into the spirit this year. I’m just not overly motivated. Nothing is wrong, I just can’t seem to find any excitement. Actually, besides my slightly wonky eye, things are awesome. You’d think being The Pup and I’s first year together with him living here, I’d be super excited. I feel a tad guilty as I’m probably dragging a little of his excitement down. I’m sure once we get out into the festivities I’ll perk up.

We got tickets to Real Bad this year. I haven’t been in a couple years so I’m sure it will be fun. The guys always do such a bang up job putting it together. The fact it is a charity certianly helps soften the blow that the tickets are $100 (after tax) a piece now. ​

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Feel free to ingore my "meh"-ness and enjoy the weekend! Be safe, have fun!




  1. Both kinds []

Selfies v2.0

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So what is everyone doing today?1  I’m working but it’s been slow. Being on days makes even slower. *yawn*  Clearly, I wasn’t overly busy as I had time to run around posting selfies with my co-workers.

We had a big feed and I spent some time helping prep and setup. I’m usually on a later shift so being on the day side was slower than even I expected. lol Tonight will be busier but I’ll be gone by then. Anyway, hope your day was warm and fuzzy. The Pup and I are off to see a movie later and then probably Chinese delivery for dinner!




  1. Besides posting food pics to social media []

Happy Festi-Hanna-Kwana-solti-xmas

In other words, happy holidays, whatever you celebrate!  It’s always funny reading about the war on christmas. A holiday based on Christianity but all the
image

‘traditions’ were stolen from so-called pagan religions. And just because we realize we aren’t a one-religion country and try to show others the courtesy doesn’t make it a war on your particular made-up holiday. *yawn*

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Whatever floats your boat, I hope that you are having a good one. I don’t get all crazy over holidays. The Pup and I didn’t even put up a tree this year. I like to think I don’t need a holiday to appreciate the ones I love. I don’t wait for a special event to show someone I care. That being said, I can still appreciate the spirit of the holiday. We are exchanging gifts. We told each other nothing extravagant or expensive. We are doing one gift each. Even though, mine turned into two gifts. ‘Let me es’plain’. I originally ordered online to avoid all the drama with in-person shopping. Problem solved. That is until I got a notice saying “it was on back-order” and I had to brave the madness. It actually wasn’t as awful as I expected. Oh it was a mess but not the all out craziness. Anyway, I started out by just looking for a simple gift to get him over the holiday till his original gift arrived. Well after I bought the new gift, I found a better version of the item I ordered online. So that’s how I ended up with two gifts. Ironically, all the shopping got me a little more into the spirit. I totally almost blew off the rule about one gift.

I’m working this year, as usual. If it falls on my work day, I work it. Since I’m still doing the project at work, even though I go back to Ops on holidays, I’ll be on day shift. I’ll miss most of the evening drama that comes from families that, after lots of booze, realize why they only see each other once a year. hehehe

I hope that whatever you’re doing this year that you’re safe and warm. And if your holiday isn’t all perky and rosy, well the year is almost over. Hang in there a few more days.

And in those immortal words….’Be good to one another’

Cards 2.0

I mentioned a while back I was getting ready to do Xmas cards. I said I’d remind everyone again and here it is. hehe

If you want a card from little ole me make sure I have your mailing info, even if you think I have it. I’ll be doing my little ritual soon. Don’t post it publicly obioiusly. lol Email, text, or private msg me. hehe

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The Pup and I are both working on Christmas day, which is fine. I’m working Christmas day. I don’t mind as they pay me well for it. Another great thing about him, like me, he doesn’t get all worked into a frenzy over the idea of a holiday. We’ll do our own little moments of appreciation and celebration and that is the important part.

Thanks

Y’all know I’m not overly big on holidays. That said, I try to remember the spirit of the holidays vs falling prey to the commercial consumer engines they’ve become. I always try to be thankful but I am especially thankful this year for the wonderful things I have in my life.

I always cover the basics because not everyone is so fortunate to have even that. I’m happy to have a roof over my head, food in my belly, and enough job security to not worry for the immediate future. It may seem trivial but I am grateful for things so many of us take for granted.

Beyond that, I feel so incredibly fortunate at this moment in my life. I found the most wonderful man I could ever ask for. He makes me happy in ways I didn’t even know possible. I am so grateful we found each other and are building a life together. I’m grateful I can come home to him every day and wake up with him every morning. I feel so incredibly honored he chose me for his partner in life.

Of course, I can’t forget the ‘pooper.’  Cooper brings me so much joy and never fails to bring a smile to my face. To think I almost missed the opportunity to bring him into my life. He always gets a special treat on the holiday, of which he has already devoured. Hehe I’ve said it before but he will never know the joy he brings me.

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I hope all of you reading this are doing well and in good spirits. If your holiday isn’t as bright or as warm as you’d hope, don’t sweat it. It’ll be over tomorrow and life goes on. It’s one day.

The Pup and I are both working today and tomorrow. Neither of us is upset over that. He, like me, is very pragmatic. The only down side is we are working opposite shifts today so I won’t see him till late tonight. No worries, I’ll be there waiting with open arms for him. grrrr!

I try not to confuse being thankful for what I have with the fairy-tale projections that we are often bombarded with. Reality is rarely like the stories and I think it important to remember that subtle but important distinction. In my line of work, I see and hear the depression that grips so many this time of year. I believe it is made worse because we get caught up the idea of the perfect holiday vs just living a good life. And on the chance your are having a very bad holiday, let me extend a hand of friendship and a hug of warm feelings. Don’t let it get you down.

I wish you all the very best. As always, I love that you read my nonsense. *big hugs*

Cards

Ok. It’s getting to be that time again. You all know I don’t make a big production over Christmas but I do send out cards like crazy. I always hear comments that people miss my post asking for address updates so I’m starting earlier this year.

If you’d like a card, send me your mailing address by email, text, phone, or social media. Don’t post it here obviously. lol I’ll ask again before I send’em out but I figured I’d try to give everyone a heads up early this time.

I’ve given up trying to keep lists because every year I seem to misplace my list. I either get a new gadget or I simply can’t find the damn file. Arrrgh!

I got several cards back last year so even if you think I have your address, please update me.

On a side note, Cooper has decided to help me this year. You’ve been warned! hehehe

Cruise

I’m leaving for vacation tomorrow. My first real trip away in almost 4 years. I got to go see my brother a while back but I was also on a work trip so I couldn’t really do much or stay long. And let’s face it, doing family visits is not a vacation. hahaha

Anyway, I’m doing the Atlantis cruise to Puerto Vallarta and Cabo for 5 days. My two besties from back home are going as well. It promises to be an event. I hope those homos can survive the three of us together for 5 whole days in one place! Those two dirty snatches are just evil and I’m the only sane one in the bunch.1  And I finally get to use my passport for something other than a 2nd form of ID.

I’ve been planning this trip since last year and I must admit I am excited, part of me is anyway. Finances were a mess last year and I honestly wasn’t sure if it was wise to plan such a costly trip. But, it all worked out thankfully. My finances are still a bear but I’m well on top of them and even got a consolidation loan recently to tie everything together. I’ve worked OT off/on for the last few months to help pay for the cost so it won’t dent my normal budget at all.

Part of me is a tad sad because The Pup can’t go. I could have gotten him a ticket (half price even) but with his transfer being so fresh and moving into the holiday season, he just couldn’t get the time off. I’d tinkered with the idea of canceling but he forbade me from doing so. Now that it’s here, I’m glad he did. I’m excited to get away but I’m also excited to see my friends. I haven’t seen either of them in years and I truly miss their dirty snatches. I wish they both could move and live here with me.2  I’m also very happy to have a partner who doesn’t me doing it w/o him.  He is perfectly fine with me going. Besides, we’ve been inseparable since he got here, he probably wants a break. hehehe That said, I still wish he was coming along. He’s become my best friend and I just hate doing it w/o him. But as he says, there is always the next trip. And yes is right,  we’ll have plenty of time to gallivant around together over the years ahead.

I have scheduled a few random posts to go live while I’m gone. No, I will not be live blogging from the cruise. The Internet ain’t cheap and the roaming for cell service is truly astronomical. I find it ironic Tmo did away with roaming from within other countries but while on a boat I’m still hit with heavy fees. I can use my cell and data from Cabo or PV w/zero extra cost but let me connect to cellular on the boat and my goose is cooked! Anyway, I’m sure I’ll have plenty of stories and pics when I get back.

Cooper isn’t going either I’m afraid. Don’t think I didn’t look into it. No, he’ll be staying home as well. The Pup and my roomie are both around to take care of him so I don’t have to worry. Luckily, even if they weren’t around I have enough local friends I could have left him with. I would not have kenneled him. He’s come a long way since I rescued him but the idea of him thinking I abandoned him would have ruined the entire trip for me. No, he’ll be home lounging for days before he knows I’m gone. Ok, not really but I’d like to think so. hehehe He’ll miss his daddy but be in excellent hands while I’m gone.

While a tiny bit sad, I am still very excited! I’m eagerly awaiting the trip and the experience!




  1. You totes believe that right? []
  2. Though I doubt SF would survive the event. []